17 September 2008

Kenneth Cokrel Jr. Takes The Oath For Detroit

Detroit City Clerk Janice Winfrey administered the oath of office to [Kenneth] Cockrel at 4:25 p.m. making him Detroit’s 61st mayor in a low-key ceremony that was announced to the media after the fact.
News outlets like The Detroit Free Press have noted that Kenneth Cockrel Jr. took the Detroit mayoral oath of office two days early, since it doesn't go into effect until Friday. But for many Detroiters and most Michiganians, Cockrel couldn't have taken the oath soon enough.

Cockrel's appointment as an interim mayor until a new mayor is elected "does not take effect until 12:01 a.m. Friday. It was done early to "ensure the seamless transition of power that the city government will continue to operate," according to a statement from a Cockrel spokesman. "

Now, I've been involved in some debates recently concerning what impact this will have on the city of Detroit. While most locals see Kwame Kilpatrick's resignation and impending departure from city politics as a ray of sunshine, there is some fear that Cockrel will become but another lingering cloud over the landscape of the Motorcity. After all, he is a lifelong politician; a political insider who chaired an ineffective city council during Detroit's recent storms.

While some of that may be true, I say let's give the man a chance during this stint as an interim mayor. He accounted himself honorably during Mayor Kilpatrick's many foibles and Monica Conyer's childish antics. While many collapsed, Kenneth Cockrel Jr. did not crumble, but moved forward with dignity.

Next May the city will hold a special election allowing the people of Detroit to actually vote on a new leader. Until then, let's watch. Let's wait. Let's see.

And The Khaki Elephant wishes you success, Mr. Cockrel.


  1. Anthony Palmer, Ph.D. said...

    I hope Cockrel is able to improve race relations because it seems that Wayne and Macomb Counties have a lot of animosity between them. Kilpatrick needed to go though.

  2. Khaki Elephant said...

    I agree, Anthony. I really like Cockrel's integrity and think that he can get Detroit headed in the right direction again while at the same time bridging the divide with the suburbs.

    Of course, I felt the same way when Kilpatrick took office, so time alone will tell.